No risk manager knows everything. And if you think you do, then this may be a reality check for you.
Regardless of how long you have been in the risk management profession, you have built up a network of fellow practitioners – people you can contact when you have questions or challenges.
But have you built a risk intelligence network?
I use this term very deliberately because some synonyms for “intelligence” are acumen, brainpower, information, and news.
Every risk professional should have a risk intelligence network that spans both internal and external connections.
The people inside your organization can fall into one or more of the following 4 categories:
- Risk Champions – these people are your eyes and ears, but don’t consider them tattletales. Instead, they are experienced enough to filter what they see and hear to pass along only the information that would be beneficial to you.
- Influencers – these individuals can inspire other employees in their business area and can help you engage the employees in embedding a risk-mindset into daily activities.
- Sponsors – typically, an executive who is really promoting ERM in the organization, ensuring ERM has a seat at the table and a voice in the important discussions. This role is invaluable to the long-term success of the ERM program. Not only do they promote ERM, sponsors also ensure that needed resources are available. If you have an ERM sponsor who is leaving the organization, start working immediately to secure a new sponsor.
- Advocates – usually mid-level or senior management who is vocally supportive of ERM and how it benefits the organization. Advocates will really encourage their business areas to involve ERM in critical discussions and proactively seek out ERM’s consultation.
Outside your organization has a whole different flavor, as there are a variety of roles and perspectives that could be useful to a risk management professional. Some examples of external risk intelligence network connections are:
- The fellow risk professional you met at a conference or on LinkedIn
- A vendor with a specialty, such as technology or vendor contracts
- Your ERM software provider
- Members of professional organizations
- Your insurance broker or agent
It is a wise decision to utilize all your possible resources when you run into roadblocks or need to know how something is being done at other organizations. After all, they will likely be reaching out to you for the same reason!
How did you develop your risk intelligence network?
I invite you to share your stories or questions in the comment field below; or join the conversation on LinkedIn.
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And don’t forget to continue browsing to learn more about my approach to ERM. And you can always contact me directly to discuss your organization’s methods of identifying and prioritizing threats and opportunities.